Sunday, November 29, 2009

Movies That Never End? and an Indian Feast!

Do you have a movie that you've watched a dozen times over but for some reason or another you rarely get to the end? You know the ones... like Dances With Wolves. I love when that movie comes on TV! I'll turn it on with every intention of sitting through the whole thing but by the time John and Stands With a Fist hook up I'm gone. Sometimes I even forget how the thing ends though I can damn near recite the first forty minutes line for line....

Same goes for the Cher classic, Mermaids, Farris Beulers Day Off, and Good Will Hunting.... Or Oh! Another is Unforgiven. How does that one end?....

On a totally unrelated note I spent all day Sunday making an East Indian Feast!!

I made from scratch...

Aloo Gobi (potatoes and cauliflower cooked in Indian spices, garlic and onion.)

Raita (dipping sauce made of yogurt, buttermilk, cumin, cucumber, carrot, lemon, and cilantro.)

Roti (unleavened whole wheat bread.)

Chicken Skewers (chicken marinated in buttermilk and Indian spices, then skewered and grilled.)

Basmati Rice (made with cumin, peas, cilantro.)

Vegetable sauce (coconut milk, red curry paste, onion, red pepper, tomatoes, tomato paste and spices.)

Chaat (Raita (see above) with chickpeas, potato, chutney, cumin, cilantro and topped with a crunch fried dough like what samosas are made with.)

All the food turned out, thank goodness, as there were eight of us for supper. I finished with a homemade coconut flan dessert and Indian sweets that I bought from the store. As good as everything was, I can easily say that the company was better!

Hope you all head a great weekend!

Friday, November 27, 2009

Chelsi's Favorites- Under $1000

The horses listed below are a mere smattering of the thousands of good, registered, broke, sound and sane horses on the market today for under a $1000. This group isnt the best and isnt the worst, they are simply horses that jumped off the page for some reason or another...some are one's that I'd love to see broke or aged horses that are in awesome shape or prospects that pique my interest. Anyways, here is just a few....

(note: I'm not overly fussy about angles when looking at pictures of a horse. I find a photo can make a bad horse look good or a good horse look bad.)

This gelding might not be flashy but he certainly looks like he could become a pretty handy horse. $1000

I'm hoping that this is a bad picture of this 13 year old palomino mare. Her daddy (Sonny 00 Buck) is a well known stud in Washington/Oregon and tends to produce some nice horses.

I'm usually not too keen on paint markings but I like the pattern on this mare. She is reg., broke, and $700.

I really like the color of this 4 year old mare...her lack of white and rich chestnut coat gives her a unique look. She is started and quiet so makes my list at $1000.

This mare might not be registered but she is not bad looking, young (8) and broke, at $600 she's worth a look.

I dont care how old this mare is (22) she is pretty as a picture and dead broke. $1000

This six year old bay mare isnt broke but she's just too cute to sit...someone needs to put her to work. At $500 I think this mare is worth a look.

This mare may be 20 years old but any horse that looks that good at that age gets my vote. At $750 she's priced well for a very well broke gaming horse- even given her age.

This two year old gelding is unstarted but I like him anyways... nice sharp looking horse that has a mix of pleasure and old school cow breeding.

5 year old bay roan AQHA mare. This one get's my vote, in part, because the sellers actually advertised her as bay roan, not blue! $800, broke and she looks like she could do a hard days work.

Happy Birthday Mom!!

(Mom and me, circa 1983)

Let me tell you a little something about my Mom...

My Mom is the kind of person who when you meet, you feel instantly drawn too. Her face is warm, open and inspires trust in complete strangers...which is probably why she finds herself so often deep in conversation with the most unlikely of people- from baristas to the guy behind her in line, to cashiers and the UPS guy, my Mom can flush out their life stories as quickly and easily as most could discover their first names.

Her personality dazzles from the inside out and her smile radiates with the golden light of her soul. My Mom is the life of the party. She dances like nobody's watching, she shakes her booty and sings along (even if she doesnt know the words) and can teach most bartenders a few new tricks, (behind the bar, no less.) Dont let her sweet smile fool you, she can play a mean game of pool and is no slouch at the cards either. She is the first to offer a helping hand, a kind word or to defend her friends or family and the last to leave anyone in need. She is quite simply as vivacious and lovely as a woman can be.

(Mom, circa 1966)

One of the greatest joys of my life has been that I've gotten to spend so much time with my Mom. Shopping, decorating, picking colors, baking or just watching TV, she is the best of company. Her laugh is infectious and her teasing- relentless! She is compassionate, insightful, smart, and witty! A salt-of-the-earth, loving, supportive and delightful woman I am so very proud to call my Mom.

How many adjectives did I just use? Not nearly enough! She deserves them all and many more.

HAPPY BIRTHDAY MOM!! (Mom and me, Oct. 09)

I love you.


Tuesday, November 24, 2009

New Moon, Horses, Pippy and Sex Toys

So far today I've gotten half way through four, four posts before giving up and trying on another topic for size. Nothing feels right... I started with a review on New Moon (that I saw yesterday with my Mom and Sister) and how I once met the guy who play's the huge Vulturi guard, Felix (pictured above)...but then decided that I'd look a little pathetic doing another Twilight post...
....and so started writing about the issue of unwanted horses and how yesterday I was reading about how there has been in increase in the number of horses being abandoned (NY Times)....
(Which has nothing to do with the above picture... I just included that because I thought it was cool... they call that an Alaskan Clydesdale.)
Anyways, I found whole issue was just totally depressing and so I thought...

I know! I'll write about Pippi Longstocking!

Remember her? Red pigtails, striped socks and a leopard spotted Appy? But a few sentences into my post I realized that was about all I actually remembered about Ol' Pippi and her horse...who was named "Horse" by the way.

So then I decided that to continue with the thread of my last post, I'd ask all of you if you ever had a friend or acquaintance throw a toy party (and no, not kids toys...*ehem*) and how reflective that may or may not be of women's lib and this generation's disregard of the cultural standard of ladylike behavior.... The problem with that post is that it is about...well... need I explain what made writing that post awkward?

And so that leaves me with a post about all the things that I didnt post about.

So to sum up...

I liked New Moon. Go Team Jacob!

The economy is causing horses to be abandoned.... which totally sucks for them.

Pippi Longstocking had a horse named Horse. She rocked.

And women are having sex toy parties. *blank stare*

You're welcome.

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Twihards Have Officially Gone WAY Too Far!!

So this evening I stumbled upon a funny link of the "30 Most Disturbing Twilight Products". Now, some of these products I really didnt find disturbing at all...not that I would personally buy any of them but I didnt really see the harm in a bumper stickers, T-shirts and cookbooks.... even Vovlo taking advantage of Edward's car of choice...or Burger King's Team Edward or Team Jacob water bottles. All clean fun if you ask me... but...

A few were a little creepy... or a lot creepy... like the underwear (with Edward's face on the inside), dolls, sheets, shower curtains and a silhouette you can stencil on the wall of your bedroom that is somehow distinctly Edward along with the words "Be safe" . Not to mention golden contacts and a felt replica of Bella's womb. Yes, I said womb. Creepy!

But what I found particularly...actually, beyond disturbing, was a certain object... ahh... yah... I'm not going to say what it is.... other than that it sparkles and apparently contains a little ice in order to "retain a cold temperature" and achieve the most "authentic experience". Can I just say WTF!!!!! Wow! Twihards have officially taken it WAY too far.

Fat Toe Syndrome and A Study of Apes

I have Fat Toe Syndrome. Any of my regular readers might be aware that I like to invent syndromes. It's called, "Syndrome of making up Syndrome's Syndrome." Do you have it?


So... I have fat toes. My second toe... or is it my third? Do you go left to right when counting or right to left? (the ring finger toe equivalent) is abnormally fleshy and whenever I go for long walks my witches toe (the toe next to your big's called a witches toe if it is longer than your big toe.) steps on my third toe and creates a blister. I am convinced that my weight issue has finally gotten so bad it is effecting my toes. Hence the Fat Toe Syndrome. Does anyone else ever have this?


Okay, okay. I'm weird and totally rambling and so I'll try to pretend I didnt just make a total ass of myself by recommending a highly educational PBS program...

A few months ago I caught an amazing show on NOVA (PBS) about apes. It was absolutely fascinating and I've been hoping to see it again some day... which is why I was so excited when I found that it is available online!

Until I discovered that it is only available online to US viewers! WTF! We're Canada people! Not Russia! Not very neighborly, if you ask me.

I'll share anyways!

Click here to go to the page on NOVA's website.

The program is broken into chapters.

I found the chapter on "Impulse Control" most interesting because of the study featured in which children and apes are tested on their impulse control- they had to choose between getting one gummy bear immediately (in a bowl in front of them) or waiting a few minutes to receive a handful of gummy bears. It is really neat to see how some children were totally unable to control their impulse and decided to take the single gummy. What was even more fascinating was how the length of time the child managed to resist the temptation of that single gummy directly correlated to their SAT scores later in life (the longer they waited the higher their scores.)

Anyone one to take a guess how I would have fared in that experiment?

A bird in the hand is worth two in the bush?

Yes or no?

For those outside the US, here is a link to the program on youtube:

Part 1/6
Part 2/6
Part 3/6
Part 4/6
Part 5/6
Part 6/6

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Pony Girl Needs to Back Off My Man!! (Robert Pattinson)

Just who does she think she is? Posting pictures of herself with MY MAN!!! Does Pony Girl not know he is all mine? Well... "all" and "mine" being a relative term for me and the other fourteen million girls who want to marry him at this moment. Not that I'd marry him... *ehem*

Pony Girl, I like you. Really, I do. I actually could say ditto to everything you wrote in your (hilarious) post on our love affair with Twilight.... but need to step away from my man, sista!

Anyways, I just thought I'd say....

Hours. We are hours away from New Moon.





*bites lip*

*squeal escapes*

*clamps hand over mouth*


*totally flips out- squealing, bouncing, giggling and wild jazz hands*

*remembers that she is 27 years old*

*hangs head in shame*

Thank you, that's all I have to say about that.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Progression of a Portrait and Where did the Fall Go?

Is it time to lighten things up a little? To take a deep, slow, relaxing breath and stop to enjoy the....

Christmas Music?

I was in Macy's today with my Mom singing along to "I'm dreaming of a White Christmas" when really I was dreaming of when I'd get my next Starbucks eggnog latte. It snowed here for the first time a few days ago. Was it not just summer? Where did the Fall go? I'm not ready for this year to end.

Anyways, to lighten things up a little I thought it might be neat to see the progression of the portrait I did last month. Every time I start a new piece I tell myself that I'm going to take pictures every fifteen minutes so if I lined the pictures you we could watch a time lapse of the portrait being drawn... only I never do.

Anyways, here it is the few I did snap. Sorry for the funky color...the light is hard to get right in the evening.

Monday, November 16, 2009

Neglect and Abuse Cases- What can be done?

I think that, given Fugly's blog is umpteen times bigger than my own, it is safe to assume that anyone concerned with the issue of the "starving reining horses" in Washington have either already seen Fugly's blog or will in the near future.

Fugly's decision to publish the name and ranch of those who are accused of starving some reining horses in Snohomish County Washington was one I previously chose not make in light of the fact that I was unable to ensure that any information I posted was factual and/or that it served the purpose of helping the horses concerned.

Bloggers are not held to the same ethical standard as journalists, but with the evolution of the Internet in our culture, more and more of the public has come to rely upon blogs as a source of news and information and as such, I feel we bloggers must take responsibility for ensuring that anything we write, when presented as fact, is such and that the rights of the individual are being respected. Laws against libel and slander exist, in part, to avoid the mob mentality and potential for vigilantism that can be created when the public's emotion is called to rise by those who offer neither facts, an un-bias opinion or a solution.

While it may seem I am putting the rights of those who may be violating the responsibilities inherent in owning and caring for animals, over the concern for those who are being subject to their abuses, I'd like to point out that attacking the accused does little to help the situation, and in fact may be counterproductive.

My reason behind first blogging about this issue was to hear from people that knew of the situation first hand and to find out what was being said and done to help those horses. I also wanted to express my shock that such neglect could happen to animals so valuable.

After writing that post I e-mailed a number of people in an attempt to find out- First, what was true; Second, what had already been done; and Third, what more I could do to help.

In the past, when faced with a case of neglect, abuse, and/or horses that are in need of the public's help I have found it most helpful to first ask:

Who has power to feed, remove, view and control these horses?

The answer almost always is the owner and the government.

Those who have the greatest position of influence- friends, family and peers- are most likely to be able to persuade the owner to accept help. In this case I am sure Judy Caton was overwhelmed by the e-mails, phone calls and visitors from all of these concerned fellow breeders and trainers in her community. Anyone in a position of influence, that was willing to do so, has no doubt already tried to remedy the situation.

If social pressure from an owner's peer group is unable to persuade him or her, it seems unlikely the public would fair much better.

And so that leaves us with government intervention and Fugly's suggestion that Animal Control be called. Obviously, if anyone is witness to any kind of abuse or neglect it is our responsibility to report it to the local Animal Control office. However, I worry that rallying a group of third parites together to call on mass will do little but overwhelm the office staff, who are probably overrun with the unfortunate byproduct of this economy (unwanted, neglected and abandoned animals.)

My experience has been, in such cases where it seems the local authorities are doing little or nothing to resolve the problem, it is because they are subject to certain legal procedures and protocols in order to seize property (and horses are considered property). Restrictions like whether there is enough feed on the property to for the number in the herd, mitigating circumstances that could have lead to the horses declining health, the owners explanation, the person(s) responsible for their care vs. owner(s) etc.. are all factors that could leave the humane society will little choice to but wait for the situation to decline. No amount of public outcry can change the ability for local animal control to act in a case where there is no legal merit. As these laws are made at the legislative level, I think we are better served to put the presure of such social activism against those who have the power to exact change.

Another source of potential change within the industry could be within the governing bodies of equine sports like the NRHA, NCHA or NSBA not to mention breed associations like the AQHA or APHA. Should these organizations take stand on the breeding and husbandry practises of their members? Should limits be placed on breeders? Should licences or registration privileges be revolved for abuse or neglect cases?

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Starving Reining Horses in Washington???!!!!

This morning I received a startling e-mail, one that alleges a well known Washington breeder of reining horses is responsible for neglecting the horses in their care to the degree that some are "starving to death".

I received this e-mail fourth hand (meaning it had been forwarded four times by the time I received it) and as such I'm not going to give the full details, as of yet.

I do not personally know the ranch in question but did know of it and of the person who is making the allegations. The e-mail was written by a well known local trainer and was intended to draw the attention of a nine well respected breeders and trainers within the reining industry...I do not believe it was his intent for this information to "go viral" on the Internet but I feel it is only a matter of time before it does. Some of THE top names in the NRHA world as well as the most notable ranches in the North West were included in that list and so I can only conclude that the trainer's intent was to apply enough social pressure on this breeder that she would clean up her act.

The pictures attached to this e-mail clearly show horses that are in desperate need of attention and seriously underweight. It is alleged that these horses belong to a very well known breeder heavily involved in the North West reining industry as well as at a national level, standing quality stallions, an impressive group of broodmares and is a well being a recognized sponsor of events in the NW.

I am a bit at a loss over what or how much should be said or done without having any first hand knowledge of the situation. Obviously, I want to help those horses in any way possible including posting information about what is going on here in hopes of providing some small support in remedying the problem. Her horses are valuable show animals that are known within the community and the facilities are higher end...these are not some horses hidden away in a backyard and so I am stunned that this problem as not come to light sooner or been allowed to go that far. As we all know the ASPCA/SPCA is not always able to act in situations where they might like to and so while I am sure they have been informed, I'm not sure that much will come it. I want to find out what is true and what is not before providing names or details...

But what then? What if it is true? What is being done with these horses who so desperately need our help?

It seems unbelievable that neglect like this is possible with a ranch so prominent and well known within the community. I am going to see what I can find out and will post an update asap.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Just Eight More Days Till...

Yah, you know what I'm talking about! Just eight more days!

Are you getting excited yet?

I am!!

(for those of you who don't know what I'm talking about... to bad!) Bwahahaha!

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Women Against Psychic Bladders Unite!

I think my bladder is psychic! Or at the very least totally masochistic. If I am twenty minutes from home and I have to go pee, I can hold it with no problem....right up until the driveway. As I approach the house the urge gets the front door I'm starting to get worried... and as I walk in the house take my jacket off and start down the hall I'm starting to panic... things turn urgent... and then... then I get to washroom!... but not in the washroom! Oh no! I'm poised just outside the door...standing there... doing the pee pee dance! I stare longingly at the toilet. Finally I make the final dash but wait! There is one last step. The pants! The pants must come down! Another pee pee dance ensues. And then... well then, relief alas. Why? Why couldnt that sneaky little voice trick my bladder into thinking that we were still miles away from a washroom? Why must it always let the secret fly just a few feet short of home? I wanna know, dammit! Why?! Btw, this is nothing new. I remember when I used to walk home from school it was the same story, every day. I'd get to within five houses of home and BAM! It'd hit. I gotta go! Now! What is really embarrassing is that I lived in a cul-de-sac and so it's not like I was able to just stop in front of my neighbors house and do a little pee pee dance for a minute. Oh no! I'd have to come up with some inconspicuous task to use as an excuse to stop... you know, check my back back, tie my shoe (or untie and re-tie I should say) or stop and admire my neighbor's garden. The sweet lady next door must of thought I was obsessed with her pansies! But eventually I'd make it through the front door and then it was game on! My bladder and I'd have a throw-down, show-down. The nearest bathroom? Upstairs... seven small steps... seven agonizing steps to freedom.

Why not just go before leaving school you ask? Because I didnt have to go then. Oh no! And these days my bladder doesn't give up that pertinent little bit of news before I leave the grocery store or restaurant either. No! No! It is sadistic freak of nature that knows just which bathroom is mine! So it lays in wait, holding tight until it senses the moment to strike! Just a few feet short of the blessed, blasted toilet, it springs to life! But I shall play slave to no man... or organ! (that doesnt sound right, does it?)... I am a strong, confident, woman in firm control of her bladder! And so I fight! I fight! And I'll win, dammit!

I'm going to start a club, "Women Against Psychic Bladders Unite!" WAPBU for short.

Are you in!?!
Oh! And I discovered something else! All of these pin up girls we thought were trying to be sexy?! Well they're not! Oh no, they're doing the pee pee dance!!! Check it out!

Monday, November 9, 2009

Zenyatta's Scare Tactics!

If I had money one Zenyatta to win the Breeders Cup Classic and had been watching her walk around the paddock before the race, I do believe I'd be peeing my pants. Why? Because I wouldnt have known that it is customary for her to act like the lamest, gimpiest, most crippled horse to ever step foot on a racetrack while struttin' her stuff before a race. Dont believe me? Check this out.

And that isnt even the worst of it! (actually I was having trouble with youtube and couldnt find a good video of how gimped she can look.) Who in their right mind would bet on a horse that walks like that? Unless reassured that in the last 14 races (that she won) she'd done the same thing?

It's like she's trying to pull one over on the betters (maybe she is the reincarnation of a horse trainer! lol)

Saturday, November 7, 2009


WOW!!!! I just finished watching the Breeders Cup Classic, the richest race in North America, and all I can say is WOW!!!! She did it!!! ZENYATTA just ran the race of her life to beat the boys and make history as being the first filly ever to win the Breeeders Clup Classic!!!!! I will try to post the race when it comes up but let me tell you she came from behind, won handily and was given no easy trip, crossing the finish line with her ears pricked forward and one eye on the crowd.

When the race was finished the announcer asked Mike Smith, her jockey and one of the winningest riders in history as well as a Hall of Fame jockey, did he think he was sitting on horse of the year to which he replied, "She's horse of the decade; she should go down as one of the greatest horses of all time!"

I'd guess that for the first time in the history of horse racing, the debate between who will win Horse of the Year will lay between two fillies- the great Rachel Alexandra and the fabulous filly, Zenyatta...though I have little doubt that Zenyatta, with her record of 14 wins and 0 losses, will beaten on or off the racetrack.

What a year for the girls!

Here is the video...

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

My Latest Portrait

I am DONE!!! Finished! Finito! What, you ask? My latest portrait, that's what! I just had to share because this portrait was one I was really excited about doing it- first because the subjects are so beautiful; second because the commissioner is an artist and so can can appreciate the composition and lastly because I drew the portrait using photos I took myself....and I also just happen to be pretty happy with the finished piece, which is not common for me.

This is a photo of the piece.... the color is not right and some of the depth has been lost and the... *sigh*... you get the idea....

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Family Genes- Sisters

While I am a firm believer in the power of genetics even I admit there is a limit to how much stock we should put in genes over the merits of the individual. I don't have to look farther than my own family to see that two siblings can be vastly different in looks, personality and talents. My sister has three inches on me.... maybe four...and half. She has olive skin and beautiful big greeny hazel eyes whereas I have piglet pink skin and blue eyes. We do both have dark hair, big knees and a propensity to trip while walk up stairs.. and to into walls and both have trouble with sharp objects. What am I talk about?

Yesterday I found a mare for sale that is a full sister to one of my favorite mares of all time, Sage- a gorgeous buckskin quarter horse with a big soft eye, million dollar disposition and a cute, compact little body. She is cowy, low headed, deep hocked and sweet as pie. She is the kind of mare that people comment on...or try to buy. The only thing I dont like about Sage is she's 14.1HH, a little too small for my big heiny. Which is why I was pretty excited, yesterday when I found her full sister, who looks pretty dang cute and just happens to have the added bonus of an extra 3 inches (she measures 15HH).

Which got me thinking about just how much stock I put in the old family genes. Obviously this mare would have to be nice in her own right but I guess a part of me doubts how much one sister can be like the other.

Are you much like your sister (or brother)?

I also wonder... Why is the abbreviation for hands, HH?"

(Note: Barbie, Sage is too 14.1!!! And you know it!! I was there when we sticked her! And no, not even in high heels:)